The Power of Japanese Drums

This well-received hour-long concert showcases the impressive skills of the four-person performance group Samurai Drum IKKI. The impressive dance-like drum routines create a tangible energy in the room that can leave the audience breathless at the end of a song.

The intensity and commitment of the artists is reflected not just sonically but visually

The act consists of a lead drummer and composer of the group’s original music and three women who drum, dance, and help with supporting instruments. The amount of energy in the act is impressive and at times, almost intimidating. The drums are punctuated by fierce vocal shouts and occasionally accompanied by bells and even, at one point, a beautiful flute solo. The intensity and commitment of the artists is reflected not just sonically but visually, as they perform the samurai-inspired choreography in beautiful traditional garb.

When the group pauses to explain the story behind their instruments and then again at the end, to introduce each other to the audience and promote their merchandise and CD, they are surprisingly upbeat and chirpy. The girls are charming and their leader is hilarious, cracking jokes in his self-proclaimed bad English to a crowd roaring in laughter and admiration. The cherry on top comes in the form of a lovely origami paper crane handed to each audience member as they leave the venue. 

Reviews by Jamie Stuart

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Performances

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The Blurb

Japanese taiko drumming troupe, Samurai Drum IKKI, are Edinburgh Festival Fringe veterans, back for their fourth consecutive year with a world premiere titled, The Power of Japanese Drums. These very talented, ambitious young percussionists have created emotional groove and beats through many years of very rigorous training. ‘Challenge your limits’ is always on their minds. Feel this IKKI beat like you have never felt it before.